If you want to make money playing your instrument you have to start turning gigs into jobs! Stop treating music as a social event and start becoming more business minded. If you want music to be a career you have to take control of your earnings.
Stop playing for the door
One of the biggest scams going on are clubs having bands work the door. The idea is you have to sell (X) amount of tickets with all sales going directly to the vendor. . If that amount isn’t realized the band is cancelled. Once the quota is met, the band receives a percentage of each ticket sold therafter. It is also a requirement to have (X) amount of people turn out for your performance in order to get called back.
The reality is that the band rarely makes any money unless they are well established in the community. The idea that you are making yourself visible and will land more jobs in the future, is the vision the vendor wants you to believe. The vendor has you hustling tickets, promoting and advertising for them, showing up hours ahead of time to set up equipment , perform for several hours and then break down all the equipment, all for a small percentage of the door. The vendor profits from ticket sales to a large crowd of patrons that your band brought in and makes alot of money selling drinks all night without any expense or committment whatsover.
If enough people refused to do the vendors job and stop working the door everything would turn around. The vendor needs to have music for their establishment or else they’ll go out of business. Realize you have the upper arm! Otherwise you will need to switch careers in order to earn a living.